75 Facts About Cuisines From Around The World

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1 Sashimi


The Japanese considered raw salmon dangerous since Pacific salmon were prone to parasites. Norway had too much salmon and decided to focus on teaching Japanese consumers that Atlantic salmon was safe to eat raw. It took 10 years for Salmon sushi/sashimi to finally become popular in Japan.

2. The red liquid seeping out of a cooked rare steak isn’t blood. It is, in fact, a mixture of a protein called ‘Myoglobin’ and water. Myoglobin helps muscle tissue store oxygen and just like hemoglobin, contains iron that turns red when it binds with oxygen.

3. Sodium Citrate is the secret ingredient to make any cheese into a smooth, creamy nacho cheese sauce. Coincidentally, Sodium Citrate’s chemical formula is Na3C6H5O7 (NaCHO).

4. The first successful company to market chow mein in the United States was founded by the son of Italian immigrants who used Italian spices in his recipe. President Ford commented, “What could be more American than a business built on a good Italian recipe for chop suey?”

5. PB&J sandwiches were originally considered a delicacy, only enjoyed by those of the upper class. In the early 1900s, this sandwich was adopted down the class structure as the price of peanut butter dropped.

6 Toast Sandwich

Toast Sandwich

British invented the “toast sandwich” which is literally a sandwich with buttered toast as the filling. A 1861 recipe suggests adding salt and pepper to taste, and that it “will be found very tempting to the appetite of an invalid.”

7. In the 1950’s, donut shops were some of the first food businesses commonly open late at night. They became hot spots for police working the night shift since it gave them a place to grab a snack, fill out paper work, or even just take a break. This is why donuts became associated with cops.

8. There are only nine restaurants in the United States that are certified by the Kobe Beef Association in Japan to carry real Kobe Beef. Every other restaurant with the word “Kobe” in their menu is misleading their customers and serving a knock-off product.

9. ‘Fish and Chips’ is historically so important to the UK that during World War 1, the British government made safeguarding supplies of them a priority and during World War 2, Churchill refused to ration the dish.

10. Chicken wings used to be discarded as waste, but a restaurant owner was out of food, so he barbecued and served them in 1964, creating buffalo wings. It was named after the city, not the animal.

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11 Banger


The British slang for sausages is “Banger” because of World War 1 food shortages. Meat shortages forced sausages to be made with high water content, causing them to burst when being cooked, hence the name.

12. In 2006, 75% of the Chinese didn’t know that sharks were killed to make shark fin soup. But now, 91% of Chinese support a nationwide ban, thanks to activism work by Yao Ming and others.

13. The use of vinegar in sushi rice helps limit the growth of salmonella and listeria in raw fish by lowering the fish’s pH value, making bacteria less able to survive. Fresh wasabi also has bactericidal effects.

14. Ramen comes from Japan but it is made from Chinese ingredients, causing the Chinese people to think it is a Japanese dish and Japanese people to think it is a Chinese dish.

15. Perpetual Stews were common in the middle ages. It was a stew that was kept constantly stewing in a pot and rarely emptied. It was just constantly replenished with whatever items they could throw in it.

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16 Macaroni & Cheese

Macaroni & Cheese

The earliest known recipe for macaroni & cheese dates back to 14th century England.

17. Surströmming is a Swedish delicacy which is known for being the world’s smelliest food. It is made by fermented Baltic Sea herring. It smells so bad that several airlines have banned passengers from carrying tin cans of this stuff. In one case, a tenant was evicted in Germany after spreading the Surströmming brine in the stairway. The landlord was taken to court, where he brought a can of Surströmming as evidence. After being opened, the court unanimously ruled in his favor because of the smell.

18. Originally, the Yorkshire pudding was served as a first course with thick gravy to dull the appetite with the low-cost ingredients so that the diners would not eat so much of the more expensive meat in the next course.

19. Although corned beef was originally produced in Ireland it was mostly consumed by Britain and America as the Irish raising the beef were too poor to afford it.

20. The Chocolate Chip Cookie didn’t exist prior to 1938, when it was invented by the owner of the Toll House Inn in Whitman, Massachusetts named Ruth Wakefield. She sold the idea to Nestlé in return for a lifetime supply of chocolate.

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21 Oklahoma’s State Meal

Oklahoma’s State Meal

Oklahoma’s state meal is chicken-fried steak, barbecued pork, fried okra, squash, cornbread, grits, corn, sausage with biscuits and gravy, black-eyed peas, strawberries, and pecans.

22. In Peru, guinea pigs are such a large part of the traditional cuisine that the Cathedral Basilica has a rendition of the last supper that depicts Jesus dining on a guinea pig.

23. The Scottish ‘Munchy Box’ is a pizza box containing up to 3000 calories of chips, donner meat, fried chicken, onion rings, garlic bread, pizza, pakora, and more. It is sold from takeaway restaurants, primarily in the West of Scotland and Glasgow.

24. Pad Thai, the national dish of Thailand, is actually not a traditional dish, but was invented, standardized and promoted by the Thai government, and imposed upon the people, as part of a broad cultural effort to establish a sense of national identity.

25. Wounded Viking warriors were always given strong onion soup. After a few minutes, someone would smell the wounds and if onions could be detected it meant that there were serious abdominal injuries and that death was inevitable.

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